The cyclin-dependent kinase 8 module sterically blocks Mediator interactions with RNA polymerase II

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


CDK8 (cyclin-dependent kinase 8), along with CycC, Med12, and Med13, form a repressive module (the Cdk8 module) that prevents RNA polymerase II (pol II) interactions with Mediator. Here, we report that the ability of the Cdk8 module to prevent pol II interactions is independent of the Cdk8-dependent kinase activity. We use electron microscopy and single-particle reconstruction to demonstrate that the Cdk8 module forms a distinct structural entity that binds to the head and middle region of Mediator, thereby sterically blocking interactions with pol II.


  • Hans Elmlund
  • Vera Baraznenok
  • Martin Lindahl
  • Camilla O. Samuelsen
  • Philip J. B. Koeck
  • Steen Holmberg
  • Hans Hebert
  • Claes M. Gustafsson
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Biological Sciences


  • protein structure, electron microscopy, transcription, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, yeast
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15788-15793
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Issue number43
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Publication categoryResearch